Bookbug’s Library Challenge

A Guide for Libraries

Bookbug's Library Challenge - the Early Years Library Joining and Usage Incentive Scheme - is provided free of charge to all Library Services across Scotland. Bookbug's Library Challenge encourages children to discover and enjoy their local library and it’s a fun, exciting way to encourage a child to develop a love of reading for life. We hope the challenge will be run in all libraries across Scotland so children in your local area can take part. To make the most of Bookbug’s Library Challenge, please read the information below.

If you are a parent and would like to know more about the Bookbug's Library Challenge, please refer to the Bookbug for Parents section of our website.




• Children must be a library member in order to participate. Children receive a collector’s card when they sign up to the scheme
• Every time the child visits the library and borrows books their collector’s card is date stamped or initialled
• We are happy for you to decide within your local authority when the card should be stamped. For example, you may also want to stamp collector’s cards for attendance at Bookbug Sessions in your library
• After a child has collected all stamps on their collector's card, they are eligible to receive a certificate, issued in any order
• There are six new certificates to collect this year, but you may also use up any old stock you have from previous years
• The child’s name and the date each certificate was awarded should be written on the certificates before being presented
• Please note: The advertising posters for the scheme say 'For children aged birth to four', as this was the easiest explanation for parents. Age restrictions are only intended as a guide - use your discretion and offer the challenge to any child who you think would enjoy participating in it.


Promotional materials

All libraries should have received the 6 new certificates, new collector's cards and A3 advertising poster to promote Bookbug’s Library Challenge. The poster can be also downloaded in PDF format here. The materials are delivered in June to all local Bookbug Coordinators. If you have yet to receive this year’s new certificates and promotional materials, please contact your local Bookbug Co-ordinator.


Top Tips for Promoting the Challenge

Follow these top tips from local Bookbug programmes to increase participation in your local Library Challenge

• Make sure you mention the library challenge at your library’s Bookbug Sessions – you have a captive audience who will want to take part!
• Put the posters up in your library and send for display in the wider community (see above for suggestions)
• Promote the challenge on your website and council intranet
• In one area, each child who is eligible to do the challenge has a message placed on their reader record centrally to remind staff to ask if they would like to take part


Best Practice Guide for Library Staff

The Best Practice Guide for Library branch staff is a double-sided A4 sheet with simple information and top tips for running a successful Bookbug’s Library Challenge. This guide is based on examples of best practice from libraries all over Scotland. Please download a copy below.

Recording Statistics

Bookbug Coordinators are required to record the total annual number of Bookbug Library Challenge certificates that are given out by their library service once a year. Please use the template certificate record sheet here or below to keep track of certificates given out at your library.

Bookbug's Library Challenge web features

We can suggest book lists linking to the themes of each of the books features. Click here to visit the parents section of our website.


Thank you for helping make the Bookbug Library Challenge a success. If you have any success stories from your local area please share them with us!

“The challenge has increased our younger age group membership and encourages interaction between staff and children. It encourages the children to read more and in many cases to talk about what they have read with members of staff.” -Dumfries and Galloway.

If you have any comments or questions about this year’s Bookbug’s Library Challenge or the Bookbug programme, please contact the Early Years team.